For millions of Americans, April 15 is that dreaded day when we go head-to-head with the IRS, making that trip to the post office or sitting at the computer to file our tax returns. It either goes well with a nice refund heading our way, or it goes bad with a sizable part of our hard-earned money going to Uncle Sam’s coffers. But, why is Tax Day on April 15th?
But Tax Day wasn’t always on April 15. It used to fall a month earlier on March 15, but people would swamp IRS employees with mountains of returns to process because most people would file near the deadline. In a move to give IRS workers a break, Congress moved the date to April 15 in 1954. Some also say it was a move to let the government hold onto people’s money for a bit longer.
If IRS workers thought they had it rough then, then they probably had it even worse from 1915 to 1918, when the deadline fell on March 1. And that was before the days of Turbo Tax and online filing.
Tax Day this year is a bit behind schedule. Instead of the usual April 15 (a Friday), it will fall on April 18 (a Monday), giving us an extra weekend to file our returns. Thanks to Emancipation Day, a Washington, D.C. holiday celebrating the freeing of slaves in the district, we’ll have a few more days to track down our donation receipts and file our returns.
With so many deductions and tons of rules adding pages and pages to the tax code, it’s a safe bet that the extra month is something we all couldn’t go without. The tax code has become extremely complicated, and chances are you’re going to need an experienced tax attorney to navigate it.
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